Earlier I identified co-contributors who have teamed with various law firms on research surveys. Not that the law firm always leads the survey project and retains a co-coordinator. Some research projects happen the other way around; perhaps a group that lacks funds solicits a law firm to help out or another organization wants legal commentary. This analysis does not differentiate surveys by the respective roles of the law firm and its co-coordinator.
Based on 91 survey reports available in PDF that I have analyzed, approximately 106 co-contributors are named (some more than once). A more precise number count would depend on categorizing the units of larger organizations separately or collectively, e.g., Acuris units and Economist Group units.
Based on self-descriptions on their home webpage, I categorized the co-contributors into 15 types. The line between types has looseness, as between ‘Market Research” and “Marketing”, or between “Consulting” and either of those. Be that as it may, knowing that more work needs to be done to confirm all of the match ups and that other research surveys will turn up additional co-contributors, at least a preliminary view can be shared here. The plot below shows the initial results.
Law firms that do not proceed entirely on their own with a survey gravitate toward co-coordinators that help them reach the target market. Market research firms, publications that reach a sector or niche within a sector, and trade groups that have members with shared interests are by far the most common match ups. At the other end of frequent collaboration, firms team with a wide variety of co-contributors.
In this fifth post on co-contributors, it feels like more questions have arisen than answers. When and why do law firms realize that they will benefit by teaming up with another organization on a research survey? How do they locate and select their teammates? Which side initiates the arrangement? How often does either party pay the other, and if so how much? How often do law firms rely on another organization but not give them credit in the published report? Is there any meaningful classification of co–contributors? What works and doesn’t work in such arrangements?
Answers to these questions can only come from interviews with law firms who have marched with co-contributors. Eventually, this blog may be able to offer some insights.
Meanwhile, here are 14 more co-contributors and the survey report that they helped with.
- Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group (AREG): Brodies Firm Renewables 2012
- Alix Partners: Dentons Africa 2013
- Campden FB: Mishcon Reyes 2009
- Crain’s Detroit Business: Honigman Miller 2014
- Direct Marketing Association of Canada: Fasken Martineu Compliance 2017
- FTI Consulting: CMSNabarro UKREDigital 2016
- GJM: Irwin Mitchell Occupiers 2018
- Global Financial Conferences: Dentons Mining 2015
- Greentarget: Fox Rothschild CyberThreats 2018
- ICAN Institute; Harvard Business Review Polska: Dentons Disputes 2016
- Kantar Trust, retaintrust: Squire Sanders Retail 2013
- OnePoll: SAS Daniels Schools 2018
- Remark Research \& Marketing: Charles Russell Crisis 2018]
- YouGov: Osborne Clarke Consumer 2018
A law firm should decide at the beginning whether it wants to conduct the survey on its own or coordinate with others. In the data set we have been examining, many firms teamed with another group on a survey or with a group that shared an interest in the topic. In fact, we spotted nine survey reports that had two other organizations coordinating with a law firm. Organizations aplenty can help develop questions, distribute invitations, publicize findings, and analyze data.
Obviously, assistance such as this sometimes comes at a cost. We don’t know how much firms have paid co-contributors but it could be a fairly substantial amount if they services obtained fall into the broad range of consulting. Having a co-contributor also adds complexity and elapsed time because the firm must manage the external provider (or be managed by it, since sometimes another company leads the survey process) and adapt to its scheduling. There is also the matter of finding the third-party.
The benefit of bringing in outside experience is that your eventual product will be superior. They also can provide the benefits of a consultant of helping to keep the project on track and on time and bringing experienced talent.
Having previously written about 18 instances of co-contributors, here are another 13 co-contributors and their respective survey reports.
- 451 Research — Morrison Foerster MA 2016
- Acritas — Proskauer Rose Empl 2016
- Bank Polski and Polnisch-Deutsche Industrie- und Handelskammer — CMS Poland 2016
- Biopharm Insight and Merger Market Group — Reed Smith Lifesciences 2015
- Economist Intelligence Unit — Bryan Cave CollectiveLit 2007
- J.D. Power, Univ. of Michigan — Miller Canfield AutoCars 2018
- Local Area Property Association — Simpson Grierson Reserve 2016
- Local Government New Zealand — Simpson Grierson LocalGov 2015
- Meridian West — Allen Overy Models 2014
- Oxford Economics — HoganLovells Brexometer 2017
- Rafi Smith Research Institute — Gilad Saar Trust 2018
- VB/Research and The Lawyer — DLA Piper Debt 2015
- WeAreTheCity — Reed Smith London 2018
Quite often, law firms team with another entity that has an interest in the research or they retain consultants who have experience in conducting surveys. We will refer to either type of contributor as a co-contributor. Without having exhaustively checked which of the surveys collected so far have a co-contributor, it is useful to list the ones we have identified. A total of 18 firms used co-contributors.
- Acuris (Mergermarket) — Pinsent Masons Energy 2017
- ALM Intelligence — Fish Richardson Cyberbreaches 2015, Goulston Storrs Multifamily 2017, Morrison Foerster GCsup 2017
- Association of Claims Professionals and Bickmore — King Spalding ClaimsProfs 2016
- Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) — Blake Cassels CanadaCLOs 2013
- Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CCCA) — Davies Ward Barometer 2011
- Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CCCA) and IPSOS — Davies Ward Barometer 2006
- Deloitte — Norton Rose ESOP 2014
- EEF — Squire Sanders Manufacturing 2014
- ELD International and Right Hat — Winston Strawn Risk 2013
- FinanceAsia — Clifford Chance AsiaMA 2011
- Forbesinsights — KL Gates GCDisruption 2017
- FT Remark — Ropes Gray Risk 2017
- PEF Services and WithumSmith+Brown — Pepper Hamilton PrivateFunds 2016
- Pricewaterhouse Coopers — King Spalding MedDevices 20016
- Queen Mary — University of London and School of International Arbitration — White Case Arbitration 2010
- RSG Consulting — Allen Overy Innovative 2012
- Rothschild, debtwire, Mergermarket — Clifford Chance Debt 2007
- The Merger Market Group (Remark) — Paul Hastings China 2013
- UCLA Anderson Forecast — Allen Matkins CommlRE 2018
Six of the surveys cited above have more than one co-contributor. Also, two of the firms, Clifford Chance and King Spalding, worked with different co-contributors on different surveys.